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The unemployed remain unemployed because the system is really set up against them.  I am starting to understand this more and more as my unemployment period continues.  Yesterday I was at a hiring event for a local company.  There were about 5 human resources individual from the company speaking with over 100 people that showed up to apply for a position.  Continue reading along to find out what important policy change needs to be made in order to fix this problem and get qualified people back to work.

I had just been called to the table to speak with someone from human resources at the hiring event.  It was a long table and there were people on both sides of me.  Since I was only inches away from these folks, I could hear their conversations as well.  My human resources representative excused himself to get a drink of water and what I heard next to me sounded very positive.  The lady interviewing for the position was told that she was extremely qualified and her interview was going well.  The company rep obviously liked what she was hearing from this lady.  She had her fill out paperwork to officially apply for the position.  When the applicant got to the section about credit she stopped and told the company rep that she had some credit problems due to her long period of unemployment.  

The company rep immediately said that it was better to disclose them now than later.  The lady begin to tell her that she had some medical bills that were in collections.  She had a few credit cards that were in collections.  She also just had a home foreclosure.  The company rep told her she needed to speak with someone and see if these items would be a problem.  She came back a few minutes later and told this lady that the company would not be able to move forward with her.  

The job applicant next to me started to cry.  She was polite and told the human resources rep that she understood and this wasn't the first time she had heard this.  

How can people get jobs if things like this are happening?  Was this lady the type of person who would take out debt and intentionally not repay it?  Probably not.  So how can a company completely write her off because of it?  

States (or Congress) need to make credit checks an irrelevant part of the hiring process.    The long term unemployed will never find jobs if this type of practice is allowed to continue.  A company isn't extending credit to an employee when they are hired, so a credit check is irrelevant in my opinion.  A person with bad credit does not necessarily make a bad employee.  

I know that the debt ceiling is getting all of the attention in Washington right now, but someone needs to focus on the unemployment problem.  Many individuals are hitting their own person debt ceilings every day and in turn taking themselves out of contention for jobs in many cases.  

Originally posted to Frustrated's Blog on Tue Jul 26, 2011 at 06:40 AM PDT.

Also republished by Community Spotlight.

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